JANS – Online nonprofit Western Governors University (WGU) has announced that Nina Jackson, Ph.D., has been named as the first strategic partnerships manager in Mississippi. In this role, Jackson will help develop and maintain mutually beneficial relationships with employers and related organizations throughout the Magnolia State.
Established in 1997, WGU is an accredited school offering more than 80 bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business, health professions, information technology, and K-12 education. As part of its online competency-based model of education, WGU offers working adults and others the opportunity to log in when appropriate for them and accelerate through coursework with the consent of their program mentor when they demonstrate mastery of the course materials. The university currently has 915 students across Mississippi, 85% of whom come from underserved populations, plus 1,419 alumni living in the state.
A native of Jackson, Mississippi, Dr. Jackson has a background spearheading initiatives for higher education institutions and educational consulting firms since 2011. She has developed programs and strategies that champion the importance of a diverse and inclusive campus environment for students and employees. Jackson has identified barriers in recruitment and advocates for educational advancement for underserved communities.
“Given her academic and professional background and existing relationships, Dr. Jackson was by far the best candidate for this position,” said Kimberly K. Estep, Ph.D., regional vice president for WGU’s Southeast Region. “I look forward to working with her as she builds partnerships in Mississippi that will help provide equal access to education for all populations and employers.”
Jackson earned her Bachelor of Science degree in psychology as well as her Master of Science degree in clinical mental health counseling and her Ph.D. in urban higher education, all from Jackson State University. During her undergraduate studies, she interned through the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) at Yale University and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas conducting psychological research. In 2016, she received national recognition as a White House Initiative HBCU All-Star.
In her free time, Jackson enjoys volunteering with local organizations, donating to charities, traveling, cooking and spending time with her daughter.